Thursday, the school announced the firing of Georgetown coach Patrick Ewing after six seasons and an era of demoralization for the Hoyas. Here’s what you need to know:
- Ewing has compiled an overall record of 75-109 with only one win (2018-19) during his tenure as coach.
- His last two seasons have been his worst, as the Hoyas went 6-25 and 7-24 and only scored two wins in the Big East in that span.
- As a player, Ewing led Georgetown to the national title in 1984 before beginning his 17-year NBA career a year later.
the athleteInstant Analysis:
Ewing’s final game with Georgetown resulted in an 80-48 loss to Villanova in the opening round of the Big East Championship at Madison Square Garden, as he rose to NBA stardom with the Knicks.
“There are no thoughts about my future,” Ewing said after the match. “Two seasons have been rough. I am disappointed with the results of the last two years. My future is in the hands of our president, athletic director, and board of trustees.”
Just two years earlier, Ewing and the Hoyas beat Creighton in the Big East tournament final at Garden and earned an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. It was Georgetown’s first NCAA Tournament berth since the 2014-15 season. However, the Hoyas lost in the first round to Colorado.
Snapping the year and the struggling program extended to a 29-game Big East losing streak in late January, only to lose it with a narrow win over DePaul.
How did things go wrong?
This is going to sound harsh, but there is one overriding reason: Ewing simply ended up not being a very good college basketball coach. He was a respected longtime NBA assistant, but his skills didn’t translate into those required of a Georgetown men’s basketball coach, on or off the field.
He recruited well at first, but he wasn’t very good, and he wasn’t able to keep his best talent for long. On the floor, what was supposed to be a breath of fresh air for fans when he arrived — a paced, NBA-style spaceball — ended up being completely sedating and ineffective.
Georgetown never defended, never managed good stuff, never recruited the best players, never got a major championship bid or even came close. He never did any of the things you need to do to be effective at this level. Ewing’s standing in the school has made fans nervous about saying that at times — even the last couple of years — but the whole thing has been an embarrassing disaster engineered by Georgetown’s clinging to John Thompson III’s family and built largely by a coach from deep inside. – Brennan
What should Georgetown do now?
He needs a clean break, finally. Ewing was hired because Thompson III’s son had been given away, and Thompson could not bear the idea of a Thompson family member taking on the program he had created. If his biological son wasn’t the coach anymore, he would be his adoptive son. Thompson III was a great guy and a great coach, but Georgetown had to try harder to balance its gratitude for his work with his desire to step out of his shadow years earlier. Now is the time.
Rick Pitino is usually discussed as an alternate option and there is no doubt he will do an excellent job, although this will be the 70-year-old’s last job and Georgetown may find themselves looking for another coach in five years’ time. Providence coach Ed Cooley would be a slam dunk, too, if Georgetown can lure Cooley away from his alma mater. One suggestion we’ll humbly offer: former Temple assistant Matt L’Engle, who turned Colgate, one of the toughest jobs in the Patriot League, into a mid-year powerhouse. It would be ridiculous if Georgetown didn’t hear his thoughts in an interview, at least. – Brennan
what are they saying
In the statement announcing the university’s decision to let go of Ewing, the coach said he wished “the program nothing but success,” and “will always be a Hoya.”
“Patrick Ewing is the heart of Georgetown basketball. I am deeply grateful to Coach Ewing for his vision and determination and for all that he has enabled Georgetown to achieve,” Georgetown President John J. DeGioia said in the release. “Over the past six years, he has been tireless in his dedication to his team and youth. whom he coached, and we will be forever grateful to Patrick for his courage and leadership in the Georgetown community.”
“It has been an honor to work with Patrick over the years, and I deeply appreciate all of his hard work and efforts to support our student-athletes and the men’s basketball program,” said Lee Reid, Director of Athletics. “We are grateful to all who have supported this program during this time. We will immediately launch a national search for our next coach and look forward to a bright future for Hoya basketball.”
(Photo: Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
“Infuriatingly humble internet trailblazer. Twitter buff. Beer nerd. Bacon scholar. Coffee practitioner.”
The Rangers dominate the Blue Jackets, and the main test against the Devils follows
Leaders focus on the list, not chasing Lamar Jackson
Joel Embiid vs. Nuggets. The return of James Harden